4.3
5 reviews
86

Panasonic Viera 800 Series


Released May, 2008

Product Shot 1 The Pros:Good connectivity with four HDMI inputs. More shades of color gradation than many competitors. Runs much cooler than previous generations.

The Cons:24p mode can introduce flicker. Heavy compared to LCD's. High priced.

The 800U series is at the high end of Panasonic's 2008 plasmas, which is their 11th generation of plasma offerings. Positioned above the 85U series and below the 850s, the 800s offer premium features such as the one-sheet glass design and THX certification, but lack some of the more professional level calibration settings of the 850Us.

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The 800U series is the first line of plasma to achieve THX certification, with the LG PG60 Series subsequently released as the second.

Specs

  • 1080p native resolution
  • 30,000:1 static contrast ratio, 1,000,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio
  • 24p film mode
  • Game mode
  • THX certified with a THX configuration built-in
  • VIERA link
  • Inputs: 4xHDMI 1.3, 1xVGA, Component, Composite, S-Video

800U features

One-sheet glass - The one-sheet glass design is similar to the Sony XBR4's, and Pioneer Elite and Kuro televisions where a single pane of glass covers the entire front of the television, including the bezel. This design reduces/eliminates the "halo" effect that can occur around lettering and logos with traditional 3-pane designs.

THX Certification - Panasonic pays the THX company to run their televisions through a set of tests to get a stamp of approval (THX tests). Not being THX certified doesn't mean a television won't pass the tests, the company just didn't choose to pay THX to test them. Alongside the stamp of approval is the addition of a THX Movie Mode. This a display setting that is pre-calibrated for "optimal" movie watching as the gamma, luminence and other features are pre-set.

800U, and 850U features

PC-input - usually a staple among HDTVs, in Panasonic's 2008 offerings only the higher end televisions retain a dedicated input for computers.

24p support - the high-end sets from Panasonic are the only lines that perform a true direct multiple of 24p content. When receiving a 24p source from something like a Blu-Ray disc the output displays at 48Hz with each from showing for 2 refresh cycles. What this means, is that movie content is smoother and more true to the original source.

Common to all 2008 Panasonic Plasmas

Anti-reflective screen - created by Fujitsu these screens reduce the amount of ambient reflection that can appear in a brightly lit room.

100,000 hour half life - Panasonic rates the panel to last 100,000 hours, which is about 30 years of regular usage, or 11 years of non-stop, before the brightness of the display is halved.

Models

User Reviews (5)

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86
ProScore
Pros
  • 6

    Good connectivity with four HDMI inputs

  • 5

    More shades of color gradation than many competitors

  • 5

    Runs much cooler than previous generations

  • 4

    THX mode works as advertised

  • 4

    A good blend of glass finish without being too reflective

  • 3

    Best-in-class image quality

  • 3

    Ghosting effect isn't that bad for a plasma

  • 3

    Excellent contrast performance

  • 3

    Less grainyness than previous generations

  • 2

    Tied for being the best HDTV available in 2008 (CNet).

Cons
  • 1

    24p mode can introduce flicker

  • 1

    Heavy compared to LCD's

  • 0

    high priced

  • -1

    The bezel/frame could be more attractive

Comments (5)

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hotfive
hotfive: #panasonic_viera_800_series Do it today, Omar.

I just did, and will get the 46" 800U with a Panasonic Blu-Ray player thrown in, all for $1441.08, delivered.

My only fear is that it will get even cheaper ... [winces] Nov 21, 08
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Omar
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meNNis
meNNis: #panasonic_viera_800_series I own the 46" and it is fantastic. I can't tell the difference between these blacks and the Kuro's blacks (it is said they are not quite as good) and other than that, everything else seems superior on the Panny. If you shop around *coughAMAZONcough* you can find the 46 for as low as $2k with free shipping (msrp 2800!) Jun 16, 08
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Erik
Erik: #panasonic_viera_800_series There are some excellent first-hand reports of this plasma in the official AVS Forum thread starting on page 19:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1007175&page=19

The first 18 pages are basically speculation and people desperately awaiting it's release. This sounds like it may be the best plasma on the market, but keep in mind that you'll pay dearly for this designation. :) Jun 12, 08
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